Mountain View TMA wrestles with Uber/Lyft pilot

The MVGO Transportation Management Association serving Mountain View is conducting a pilot program with Lyft and Uber providing mid-day transportation for trips starting or ending in Mountain View.

The pilot program, which started in April and has been extended through the end of 2019, offers riders discounts of up to $5 on up to 10 shared trips starting or ending in Mountain View between 10am and 3pm, in a time window when public transit is infrequent and MVGO’s commute shuttles don’t run.

However, according to information reported by the City of Cupertino for their decisions about an on-demand shuttle pilot, the Mountain View TMA has found that “the ride-share companies have not provided trip data anticipated by the TMA.”

According to the report, the lack of data is making it difficult for MVTMA to financially plan the program. “The cost of these types of programs are also direct subsidies of trips, utilizing a coupon code that passengers use until the funds are used. It has been difficult for the TMA to assess how long a given sum of money will last, which is why they are offering the program only
during mid-day hours.” Also, according to the Cupertino report, “the lack of data has also brought up questions regarding whether or not trips were shared rides as intended.”

For these reasons, Cupertino decided not to go ahead with a Lyft/Uber pilot, and pursued an on-demand van system instead.

MVGO is also running a 6-month pilot program with Waze Carpool, offering commuters working in and commuting to Mountain View a discounted, flat rate of $2 per carpool ride, as well as an initial $20 credit. Carpool drivers can also earn up to $25 per trip.